Profile picture for user asparks
Ashley Sparks

Ashley Sparks is a southern theatermaker and engagement strategist. Currently, she is the Community Partnerships Associate for Cornerstone Theater Company's state-wide tour of California: The Tempest. This nine-month and ten-community tour is revisiting communities from Cornerstone's Summer Residency Institutes. As a core collaborator for PearlDamour's MILTON, she is designing, advising, and implementing arts-centered engagement activities in five small towns named Milton across the US. The Director of Engagement for the Cucalorus Film Festival, she helps program the social justice documentaries and is designing the Works-In-Progress program to provide a unique opportunity for filmmakers to engage community early in their process. From 2009-2013 Ashley served as the Event Coordinator and co-programmer for the Network of Ensemble Theater's MicroFest USA series.The first MicroFest series focused on ensemble issues and highlighted work in Atlanta, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, and Minneapolis. MicroFest: The Place Cycle was a four-part national think-tank and immersive convening exploring and celebrating place-based work in Detroit, Appalachia, New Orleans, and Honolulu. A previous ensemble member with ArtSpot Productions, she was a performer and/or director in several productions including: Kiss Kiss Julie, Flight, Turning of the Bones and Go Ye Therefore. She was the Board Chair for Alternate ROOTS. She holds an MFA in Directing and Public Dialogue from Virginia Tech.   

Lost Hills.
Lost Hills
Essay

Lost Hills

Ten Years, a Stoplight, and Sleeping in a Copy Room

12 November 2014

I remember how the stories of this community changed my life. I was shaped artistically, personally, and as an organizer. The community has stayed and made families, created a safe and healthy vision for their town, and made rich lives full of love. I’ve gone on to make art around the country—able to do so because of what I learned in Lost Hills.